ROCKVILLE - It’s not witchcraft, but Sherwood has some kind of hex over Severna Park.
The Montgomery County school continued its postseason mastery of the No. 2 Falcons with a 9-2 victory in a Class 4A state semifinal contest Tuesday afternoon at Shirley Povich Field in Montgomery County.
Ben Berger drove in three runs for Sherwood (22-3 overall), which will go after a record third straight 4A championship. The Warriors will play Frederick County’s Urbana, Friday at 7:30 p.m. at Regency Furniture Stadium in Waldorf.
Sherwood’s run has come at the expense of Severna Park. Last year, the Warriors posted a 11-0 five-inning mercy rule decision in the title game at Regency Furniture Stadium.
Sherwood edged the Falcons, 5-4, in the 2021 4A state championship match. Next year, the Warriors are moving down to Class 3A.
So is Severna Park (20-4). The Falcons’ frustrations started with the 2021 loss in 8 innings at Ripken Stadium as Ryan Bouma singled in the game winner in the top of the eighth.
Bouma, a third baseman, is the only player to play in all three games. He had two each in hits, runs scored and RBIs in last spring’s rout. Tuesday, the senior (.475 average and 19 RBI entering Tuesday) reached base all four times yesterday walking three times, scoring thrice, and had another hit and another RBI.
Bouma’s totals in the three games: 4-for-8, five runs and four RBI.
“Ryan has been a solid player for us, was our leading hitter,” said Warriors 12th-year coach Sean Davis.
Amari Allen, Sherwood’s RBI leader, had a RBI double in the first inning Tuesday that tied the score at one after Seamus Patenaude’s RBI double in the top of the first. Berger followed Allen’s RBI hit with another run scoring hit and the Warriors never looked back.
Junior righthander Sean Williams, who had a terrific season as ace of the Falcons (7-1) was dealt his first loss after pitching 5 innings as the Warriors pecked away at him scoring eight runs on nine hits. Berger was the toughest on Williams knocking in two more runs on a double in the third.
Down by 4-1 after three innings, Severna Park added a fourth run on Matt Fleisher’s solo homer to start the fourth frame after having their third at-bat end abruptly when one of their runners was picked off third with the sacks full.
Sherwood answered in the bottom of the fourth to pretty much put the game away with a three-run burst. Jacob Bagania, Brian Scott and Bouma each singled in a run for a comfortable 7-2 lead.
Nathan Clarke and Angel Santiago Cruz, who led Severna Park in batting (.429) entering Tuesday, combined four hits to add Fleisher’s homer.
“We had too many walks and mental mistakes,” said Severna Park coach Eric Milton. “And of course, we had two injured pitchers in Seamus (Patenaude) and Murphy (Nathan) so, we had to patch things together. We just have to look forward to next year.”
STATE CLASS 4A SEMIFINALS
at Shirley Povich Field
SHERWOOD 9, NO. 2 SEVERNA PARK 2
SEVERNA PARK 100 100 0 - 2 5 2
SHERWOOD 202 311 x - 9 9 2
Sean Williams, Daniel Lynn (6), Zach Linfeldt (6) and Cody Phillip; Ben Berger, Brian Scott (4), Garrett Smith (7) and Gavin Hughes
2B - Severna Park - Angel Santiago Cruz; Sherwood - Amari Allen, Ben Berger, Luke Weichel (S); Angel Santiago Cruz (SP)
HR - Matt Fleisher (SP)
WP - Brian Scott (1-0); LP - Brian Williams (7-1)